...I dreamed of the day that this car would become a reality. I didn't want just any '49 Merc, this one had to be very special. I'd have to start with the basic bones...but that is where the similarity would end. Over the next five decades, STALETO began to take shape as we gathered the pieces of the puzzle.
Also had to find the right mix of experts to put the team together.
...the roof would have to be chopped 4" in the front and 4 1/2" in the back, the body dropped and stretched a full 8 inches - then bagged, nosed and decked! Then I'd have to find a '51 Merc for the side panels. To get the right look, we would need hand crafted Lake pipes with cut outs. I wanted stainless accents from a '58 Olds and a '55 Pontiac. The skirts would have to be hand crafted to fit - and we would shave the door handles and install remote poppers.
...we would have to find a 1953 DeSoto grill for the front then custom splice '54 Merc tail lights for the back end. To enhance visability, new LED lights would be added to the mix. Headlights had to be Frenched and all the corners on the car softened.
Few cars ever manage to compete successfully on both sides of the US/Canadian border.
Since her Car Show Debut in 2014, STALETO has done extremely well in the competitive custom car show circuit.
STALETO has consistently won top awards from Northern Alberta - to sunny California, the 'mecca' for kustom show cars. She has made her mark in Edmonton AB, Calgary AB, Mission BC, Nelson BC, Sand Point ID, Spokane WA, Coeur d'Alene ID, Portland OR, Santa Maria CA, Pomona CA and Sacramento CA.
In 2017, Rick tells us..."she won the coveted George Barris award. You know you have something very special when the Barris Family presents you with the Barris shield."
George Barris, aka The King of Kustom, was the Hollywood mastermind who built all the cars from the Beverley Hillbillies to the Batmobile. Today, in honour of George's wonderful career, his family attend the major car shows and present this fabulous award to the car which best exemplifies the masterful standard set by George.
While at the 2016 Spokane Show, Rick was presented with the beautiful - and highly sought after D'Agostino's Crystal Cup. Presented in person by Johnny D'Agostino, this distinctive award puts 'STALETO' clearly in very unique and wonderful award class!
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